15. Rumex panjabensis Vaid & Naithani in Indian Forester. 105: 82. 1979; descr. Emend.
Perennis, pallide viridis. Caulis (40-) 50-100 (-150) cm altus parce ramosus, tenuiter sulcato-striatus, internodiis ± elongatis, plerumque a medio circiter arcuate ramosus et florifer, ramis singulis, simplicibus vel in speciminibus validioribus parce remosis. Folia viva tenuiter herbacea, in sicco tenuiter papyracea, ± plana; basalia ad 3- x 13 cm, ovato-oblonga, basi cordata, infra vel prope medium latissima, apicem acutum versus sensim rotundato-attenuata, petiolo laminae latitudinem ± aequante vel paulo longiore: folia caulina brevius petiolata, sensim decrescentia. Minus profunde cordata, superiora basi rotundata vel attenuata, acutiora. Inflorescentia laxa, verticilis summis exceptis omnes remoti, infimi tantum folio diminuto brevipetiolato lanceolato acuto suffulti. Pedicelli fructiferi perigonia plerumque ± aequantes, prope medium vel paulo iinfra articulati, basin perigonii subinaequaliversus sensim incrassati. Perigonii folia exteriora 1.6-1.8 mm longa, basibus valverum appressa. Valvae fructiferae atrobrunneae, tenuiter coriaceae, minute aubaequaliter elevate reticulatae, e basi leviter cordata ambitu late cordato-scutiformes, longitudine plerumque latiores, 5-5.5 x 6-7 mm, apice acutiusculae, margine in parte inferiore irregulariter inciso-denticulatae, irregulariter calliferae, callus valves anterioris major. Nux c. 3 x 2 mm, atrobrunnea.
Perennial. Stem usually 50-100 cm high, with arcuate divaricate branches from about the middle, forming an open broad panicle. Basal leaves up to 30 x 13 cm, ovate-oblong, with cordate base, broadest below or at the middle, rotundate-attenuate towards the acute apex; petiole shorter than the lamina; stem leaves gradually smaller and narrower, with less deeply cordate base; the uppermost leaves with rotundate or attenuate base, and gradually attenuate towards the apex. Panicle lax; flower whorls all remote except the uppermost. Pedicels about as long as the valve, articulate at or below the middle. External perianth segments 1.6-1.8 mm long appressed to the base of the valves. Valves 5-5.5 x 6-7 mm, broadly cordate-scutiform, often broader than long, with broadly attenuate apex, irregularly grain bearing, grain of the anterior valve longer than the posterior. Nut c. 2 mm, dark brown.
Type: India: Panjab, Amritsar, 20.V.1950, P.N. Mehra s.n. (DD!).
Distribution: E. Afghanistan N. Pakistan, Kashmir, NW India.
R. punjabensis is closely related to R. alveolatus Los. occurring in Afghanistan, NE Persia and former Sovietic Central Asia. Both species share the same leaf-shape, the arcuate-divaricate branching of the inflorescence, the pedicels of ± equal length to the valves. R. punjabensis differs, however, from R. alveolatus mainly in the smaller dimensions of the valves, their shorter denticulation, more slender reticulation and the smaller nut as well as by the more slender growth.
The original description of R. punjabensis is very incomplete. The drawing is correct as far as the habit is concerned, but the valves should be more rounded at the apex. The authors compare thier new species with R. crispus L. to which it is neither similar nor related in any way. R. crispus has a strict growth habit, narrow cuneate and crispate leaves and entire valves. Nevertheless, the name R. punjabensis has to be regarded as validly published because the type specimen is indicated and a latin description and an illustration is also given.